“Spookie… are you there?”

“Yes, Dyspepsia, I’m here.” Spookie’s feeble voice was right beside her ear.

She felt all around her. She was in her nightie, lying under her duvet. “We’re in bed!” she said. “Was it all a dream?”

Spookie had to think about that. “Well, if it was—it was.”

“Let’s put the light on and go downstairs for a biscuit.” Dyspepsia reached for the switch beside the bed and clicked it on. But nothing happened. Everything stayed dark.

“Well, there’s your answer,” said Spookie. “No—it wasn’t a dream.”

“What happened?”

“I must have quantum-tunnelled,” said Spookie. “Just in the nick of time. And since you were clinging onto me so tightly, you came too.”

“How come we’re in bed? Why aren’t we in the well, in all that boiling water?”

“When I quantum-tunnel, I usually end up where I want to be.”

“And where you want to be is safe in bed. Oh, Spookie!” Dyspepsia gave her friend a hug.

Then she slipped out of bed and went to the window… at least to where she guessed the window was, because she couldn’t see a thing in the dark. She fumbled for the curtains and drew them back a bit. Outside, the street and houses were sunk in deepest darkness.

But oh…! The stars!

She tiptoed back to bed and put her arm round Spookie’s neck. “I’ve never seen so many stars,” she said.

“That’s because there’s no light pollution.”

“Has there been a power-cut?”

“What?” said Spookie. “Are you surprised? Over in Ashbrooke I guess there’s a big smoking hole in the ground, with broken power lines trailing in it.”

“What’s happened to the Earthspot?”

“Shot clean into space, like a great big gun. Right now, it’s on its way out of the solar system.”

“Shouldn’t we get dressed and go and have a look at what’s happened?”

“What’s the point? It’ll be dark and you won’t see anything. There’s nothing we could do anyway.” She turned over and snuggled down, purring. “Let’s wait for morning, when there’ll be light to see by.”

Dyspepsia’s eyes felt blinky. She didn’t want a biscuit after all. “All right,” she replied. “Night-night.”

But Spookie was already sound asleep.